The Best Men’s Colognes of All Time

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The right fragrance can make all the difference. That’s why every man needs a go-to cologne in his arsenal. But it isn’t easy to pick the perfect cologne—some are just a bit too subtle, while others are overpowering. Some smell great right after applying but wear off within a few hours. Some check off all these boxes but don’t contain safe, natural ingredients.

With this in mind, we decided to put together our list of the best men’s colognes of all time. All fifteen of these colognes are remarkable, packing tons of unique fragrance notes in every bottle. You’re sure to love any product you find on this list. But, as you’ll soon discover, choosing your ideal fragrance isn’t something you should take lightly, which is why we’ll also teach you how to choose a quality cologne for yourself if you find that our picks aren’t quite right for you.

Why Wear Cologne?

You know cologne makes you smell good, but who actually cares? Is the way you smell really all that important, or is this just another weird societal standard you can ignore? In our opinion, the value of a quality cologne should not be underestimated. The way you smell is one of the first things people will notice about you. It can make or break their first impression of you, and if you want to make a good impression, you need to smell good.

But wearing just any old cologne won’t suffice. You need a quality cologne. Because the reality is that a low-quality cologne can be worse than no cologne at all. As such, we highly encourage you to keep reading to find out which cologne is right for you.

What Makes a Quality Cologne?

Before we unveil our list of the best men’s colognes of all time, we want to explain how you should evaluate a product when shopping for yourself. By following the advice we outline below, you can make the right decision for yourself.

How Long Does The Fragrance Persist?

When applying a cologne, you don’t just want it to smell good—you want it to smell good for the entirety of your day or night. Because if it wears off in the first hour or so, what’s the point? Pick products that feature an ultra-long wear time. This helps you get the most out of your cologne and keeps you smelling incredible all day long.

Sometimes, the specific ingredients in a cologne’s formulation are what dictates wear time. Premium ingredients persist longer. And the colognes we’re going to share with you below feature an incredible list of premium ingredients.

How Complex Is The Fragrance?

Maybe you want a cologne that smells basic and simple. But most men do not. In fact, the more complex a fragrance is, the better. Why? Well, fragrances give off an air of mystery which will help you make an awesome first impression. We especially love colognes with varying top notes.

But that isn’t to say single-note fragrances aren’t capable of being considered among the best. There are plenty of amazing single-note fragrances out there. These are a bit simpler, and yet they’re powerful in their own regard. We’ll share a few simple, amazing fragrances for you on this list, along with some sensationally complex picks as well.

How Well Does It Strike A Balance Between Too Subtle & Overpowering?

We’ve all been around that person who wears way too much perfume or cologne. Not only is this in itself a turn-off, but it can lead you to wonder what odor they’re trying to hide. You obviously want to avoid this.

While sometimes this is the result of one too many sprays, it can also be caused by a simply overpowering fragrance. Some colognes can singe off your nostril hairs.

But you don’t want to have to spray every inch of your body just to detect your fragrance. Weak cologne has no place on this list, either. Our list contains only fragrances that strike a balance between subtle and powerful.

Does It Contain Safe, Natural Ingredients?

We know not everyone cares about using safe, natural ingredients. But we take the ingredients we eat and wear on our skin very seriously, and you should, too.

Some colognes contain harsh chemical ingredients that can irritate your skin—or worse, lead to more serious health complications down the road. You should carefully inspect the ingredient label of any product you end up buying. After all, you’re spraying this stuff on your skin. That means it’s going to be absorbed and make its way into your bloodstream.

How Much Does It Cost?

As you begin shopping for luxury fragrances, you’re going to quickly discover that you get what you pay for in this market. If you want a cheap cologne, you’re going to have to compromise on one or more of the aspects we discussed above. Low-quality colognes cost less, that’s for sure. But they rarely offer a complex, long-lasting fragrance that you’re proud to sport. They also tend to cut corners in terms of ingredients, using questionable additives we would never put on our bodies. Don’t shop based on price alone.

With that said, you shouldn’t have to take out a loan to pay for a quality cologne. There are tons of affordable, high-quality picks out there that offer a ton of value to the wearer. We’re going to highlight a few such options on our list today. However, we intend to showcase the best of the best—and sometimes, you’re going to have to splurge if that’s what you want!

Eau De Parfum vs Eau De Toilette

On our list of the top 15 men’s colognes of all time, you’re going to see two phrases used a lot—eau de parfum and eau de toilette. These phrases are used to describe the concentration of a fragrance. Here is the difference between the two:

  • Eau De Parfum – contains around 15% to 30% fragrance (lasts around 8-10 hours)
  • Eau De Toilette – contains around 8% to 15% fragrance (lasts around 4-6 hours)

As you can see, an eau de parfum is a bit more concentrated than an eau de toilette. If you want a lighter fragrance that is considered a bit more subtle, stick with an eau de toilette. But if you want to turn heads and catch everyone’s attention as you briskly walk past them, the more concentrated eau de parfum is the proper choice for you.

What Are The Best Men’s Colognes of All Time?

Now that we’ve covered all the criteria you must consider when shopping for a cologne, we’re ready to debut our list of the best of all time. We’re very confident we’ve compiled an accurate, well-vetted list. Once you try them out yourself, we’re sure you’ll agree.

1.  Blu Atlas Atlantis Eau De Parfum

Fragrance notes: aromatic and earthy with citrus and woodsy notes.

Price: $100

Product Overview: One of the few products on this list that truly deserves its spot amongst the best—and also one of the most affordable—is Blu Atlas Atlantis. This eau de parfum costs just $100, but we love it more than some of the most expensive, highly-sought-after products on this list.

With an aromatic blend of citrus and wood, this is the ideal pairing for a man who defies convention. It also features notes of bergamot, clary sage, and patchouli. It’s aromatic and earthy, a must-have for anyone shopping on a budget who doesn’t want to compromise on quality. The formulation is 100% vegan and free of any artificial fragrance. Just all-natural ingredients. And the best part? You can try this cologne yourself risk-free with a 100% money-back guarantee.

2. Tom Ford Neroli Portofino

Fragrance notes: Sicilian lemon, winter yellow mandarin, orange flowers, and warms with amber undertones.

Price: $240

Product Overview: The goal of this cologne was to capture the essence of the lush Italian Riviera—and in our mind, they knocked it out of the park. Tom Ford Neroli Portofino is an excellent runner-up to Blu Atlas Atlantis—especially for those who don’t look at the price tag when shopping for grooming essentials. However, the fragrance is remarkable and a great option for any season, but especially for those warm summer days and nights.

This is another citrusy fragrance, but it is quite a bit more complex than Blu Atlas. If you can justify the $240 price tag, this is a great choice.

3. Versace Eros for Men

Fragrance notes: Aromatic, green, vanilla. One of the most complex, unique scents on this list.

Price: $87

Product Overview: One of the most well-regarded and masculine fragrances we’ve come across is that of Versace Eros for Men. When you walk into any setting wearing this scent, you’ll convey sublime masculinity with a luminous aura of intense, vibrant, and glowing freshness. This is accomplished through a unique blend of fragrances like Italian lemon zest, green apple, geranium flower, vanilla, and cedarwood.

With a 4.7-star average rating across over 4,500 reviews, you don’t have to question if this cologne will complement your natural scent. Men around the world use it as their go-to fragrance for those valuable first impressions.

4. Chanel Allure Homme Sport Eau De Parfum

Fragrance notes: Mandarin & oranges blended with Tunisian Neroli, aldehydes, tonka bean, white musk, amber, black pepper, atlas cedar, and vetiver.

Price: $132

Product Overview: Chanel Allure Homme Sport Eau De Parfum is one of the most powerful, dynamic, and invigorating fragrances for any man. But we particularly love this pick for the type of man who is constantly pushing boundaries and thrives on extreme sensations. If “good enough” or “average” won’t suffice, this is the cologne for you. Each spray offers a vitalizing fragrance that resembles a rush of adrenaline. The scent is a combination of aromatic, musky, and fresh notes.

You’ll love the sparkling notes of Italian Madain combined with the green, fresh notes of Moroccan Cypress. This is a unique fragrance that flourishes in warm weather but can be worn year-round, too.

5. Dior Homme Eau De Toilette Spray

Fragrance notes: Atlas cedar, patchouli heart, vetiver. A perfect pairing for the modern man, offering unmistakable vire that also conveys tender, sensual accents.

Price: $104

Product Overview: Dior is one of our very favorite luxury brands, and their Homme Eau De Toilette Spray is no doubt among the best men’s colognes of all time. We love the intriguingly powerful and fresh scent that it gives off. To most people, the ideal modern man is both masculine and sensual all at once. This cologne perfectly captures that essence to help you convey who you truly are. It will help showcase nuanced strength and tenderness with a bold, scented trail featuring spicy vetiver warmth, virile atlas cedar, and full, enveloping patchouli.

Not only does this cologne smell incredible, but it’s also developed in line with Dior’s sustainable initiative, aiming to help reduce our impact on the climate, resources, and waste.

6. Calvin Klein ck one Eau de Toilette

Fragrance notes: Bergamot, cardamom, pineapple, papaya, musk, amber, jasmine, violet, rose, nutmeg. All these combine for a unique, pure fragrance.

Price: $79

Product Overview: You’re no doubt familiar with Calvin Klein as a clothing brand. But did you know they also boast some of the most world-renowned fragrances, too? Their ck one Eau De Toilette is a product we couldn’t build this list without. It’s been a go-to choice for men for years, and it’s still here today among the best of the best. Interestingly enough, this was actually the first CK fragrance designed for both men and women. It’s a clean and contemporary scent that conveys purity, unity, and sensuality.

You can use this refreshing scent lavishly, as it rarely comes off as overbearing. Because men and women alike love this scent, it’s a great choice to add to your arsenal for business meetings or dates. It will serve you well in any scenario.

7. Tom Ford Oud Wood Eau de Parfum

Fragrance notes: Smoky wood and incense-filled aroma with spicy notes from rosewood, sandalwood, sensual amber, and more.

Price: $270

Product Overview: Don’t let the price tag scare you away. While Tom Ford Oud Wood Eau de Parfum is definitely among the most expensive selections on this list, there is a reason it’s here. In fact, you’d be hard-pressed to find a list compiling the best colognes on the market that doesn’t feature Tom Ford’s classic Oud Wood.

This incredibly masculine fragrance conveys compelling power and exotic sensuality. It’s built around warm, sensual wood notes with spices and pepper filling your senses as well. If you ever have the chance to sample this fragrance in-store, we highly encourage you to do so—you’ll understand it’s so loved.

8. Yves Saint Laurent La Nuit De L’homme

Fragrance notes: Spicy bergamot with a heart of cedar and lavender and a base of vetiver. A fresh, oriental fragrance that conveys a contrasting seduction and bold sensuality.

Price: $78

Product Overview: From the fragrance itself right down to the luxurious bottle, this signature, sophisticated scent is a no-brainer addition to our list of the top men’s colognes of all time. Once you apply that first spritz and breathe in the scent, you’ll see exactly why. YSL took a huge risk in developing this cologne as many of the fragrance notes clash with one another. Experts looked at the formulation and doubted this would be a success story—and yet, it’s still regarded as one of the best budget-friendly fragrances on the market today.

This bright and masculine scent helps you come off as the perfect balance of sophisticated and nonchalant, creating an air of mystery as you make first impressions or try to seal the deal. YSL claims that this scent lies at the halfway point of restraint and abandon, and is a story of intensity, bold sensuality, and seduction. We couldn’t agree more.

9. Acqua Di Gio by Giorgio Armani

Fragrance notes: Bergamot, tangerine, neroli, jasmine, marine, rosemary, cedar, and patchouli combine for a natural, fresh, and stimulating aromatic masterpiece.

Price: $75

Product Overview: Inspired by the beauty of Pantelleria, Italy, Acqua Di Gio by Giorgio Armani is masterfully crafted, combining a wide range of essential oils to invigorate the senses. It’s considered a refreshing, nature-inspired, and aquatic scent. This makes it perfect for those outdoor events.

This incredible cologne is trusted by men around the globe with almost 3,700 reviews and a 4.7-star average rating. We love buying Giorgio Armani cologne in general because you get to try free, complimentary samples with every order you place!

10. Creed Aventus

Fragrance notes: Pineapple, bergamot, blackcurrant leaves, apple, birch, pink berries, jasmine, patchouli, ambergris, sandalwood, oakmoss, vanilla.

Price: $335

Product Overview: Perhaps the most expensive cologne on this list is Creed Aventus. What makes this fragrance worth over $300? Simple—the level of craftsmanship that goes into your bottle. Each fragrance is created through a unique infusion process, with ingredients being weighed, mixed, macerated, and filtered by hand. This level of attention to detail results in the most remarkable fragrance you’ve ever encountered.

It was first brought to market in 2010, so the fact that it is still here making lists of “the best of the best” shows you how incredible it is. We deem Aventus to be the perfect pick for a man living a driven, purposeful life.

11. John Varvatos Artisan

Fragrance notes: Citrus, white floral, sweet, aromatic, herbal, fruity, and spicy.

Price: $75

Product Overview: We originally noticed this cologne because of the hand-woven, flask-shaped bottle carefully crafted to perfection. While your eyes will likely be drawn to the unique bottle, seemingly placed within a wicker basket, the real star of the show is the aroma this cologne provides. As you can see from the fragrance notes above, this is a perfect pick for the man who wants to embody the lost art of craftsmanship while simultaneously exuding a modern edge.

The carefully selected ingredients work together to create a smooth, modern, and powerful woody musk that is to die for. You’ll also get whiffs of inviting, electrifying citrus and clementine. Originally released in 2009, this is a blend that has proven it’s capable of standing the test of time—an easy pick for the best cologne currently on the market. And it’s highly affordable at under $100!

12. Hugo Man by Hugo Boss

Fragrance notes: Crisp green apple, smoky fir balsam, and vibrant aromatic notes of patchouli, lavender, basil, sage, geranium.

Price: $84

Product Overview: Hugo Man by Hugo Boss is exactly what you’d expect from this brand—the perfect cologne for the modern man. Right down to the bottle it comes in, this formulation is bold and sleek all at once. In terms of the fragrance, it’s very modern, despite being originally released in 1995. As you can probably tell, this cologne was way ahead of its time. While it’s been revamped a few times along the way, it still maintains its original character today.

If you’re a free-spirited man, this is a great cologne to complement your personality. It is also one of the more affordable options on this list.

13. Mr. Burberry by Burberry

Fragrance notes: A warm, sensual, and woody scent. Characterized by fresh, aromatic hints of tarragon, cinnamon, and vetiver.

Price: $136

Product Overview: Mr. Burberry by Burberry is a unique cologne because it’s one of the very few that is available as either an eau de parfum (stronger) or as an eau de toilette (weaker). This means you can choose a bold fragrance that fills the room as you enter or go with a more subtle concentration that will only be detected by those who are intimately close.

Trust us—you cannot go wrong with either option. This is a bold and masculine cologne, and yet it conveys sensuality and warmth all at the same time. We absolutely love how this fragrance perfectly captures the essence and anticipation of a warm London night, and you will, too.

14. Bottega Veneta Pour Homme

Fragrance notes: A harmony of leather and labdanum delights the senses with hints of fresh spices, woody aroma, and balsamic fragrance.

Price: $118

Product Overview: When you think of Bottega Veneta, the first thing that comes to mind might be luggage and handbags. Make no mistake, though, this luxury brand produces the same caliber of quality with their fragrances, too. As such, we could not complete this list without at least one of their products—and we’ve chosen to highlight our personal favorite, Pour Homme.

This leathery fragrance was first launched back in 2013, and it is still here today making waves as a top contender for any man. We love this cologne, especially for adventurous men in particular. After all, it was inspired by travelers who were daring enough to venture out of ordinary urban life. If this sounds like you, you can’t go wrong with this pick.

15. Aramis Eau de Toilette

Fragrance notes: Sharp notes of wood and leather followed by floral notes of bergamot, clary sage, patchouli, vetiver, and sandalwood.

Price: $36

Product Overview: We’ve decided to conclude our list of the top colognes for men of all time with a budget-friendly pick for those looking to stay under $50. If you’re just getting started in the world of fragrance, it can be overwhelming to look at some of the price tags on this list. Aramis Eau de Toilette is an excellent entry fragrance at just under $40. And while this cologne is cheap in terms of price, its quality ingredients make it an incredible contender even among the more expensive choices.

We love this pick for any young man who wants something masculine to match their testosterone levels. With wood and leather undertones, this seems like a more snobbishly sophisticated blend at first—until you’re greeted with additional floral hints. You can’t go wrong with this pick—especially if you’re balling on a budget.

Final Thoughts On The Best Men’s Colognes Of All Time

We’re confident that you’ll agree with our selections once you start trying out these colognes yourself. There is a great balance of luxury fragrances and affordable, quality colognes on this list. So no matter where you fall in terms of budget, we’ve got a pick for you. We’ve also shared a wide array of fragrance types, from gender-neutral scents to musky, masculine scents to woodsy, aromatic fragrances—and anything in between.

Still not quite sure where to start your fragrance journey? If we had to give you just one recommendation, it would be Atlantis by Blu Atlas. We were blown away by the quality of this fragrance, especially considering the low price point of just $100. When you factor in free shipping, it’s even more affordable. This is a versatile fragrance you’re sure to love. And if you don’t, then you can take advantage of a hassle-free return under their 100% money-back satisfaction guarantee policy. When we say you’ve got nothing to lose, we mean it—take a shot on Blu Atlas today. You won’t regret it!

 

This article has been supplied by Verma Media, a paid advertiser. Content has not been independently verified by Los Angeles magazine.